It's rare to be sued for expressing your opinion on a blog but that's exactly what seems to be happening to a librarian at McMaster University in Hamilton Ontario. In fact,librarians in both Canada and the US took to social media yesterday to discuss the rumour that Edwin Mellen Press <http://mellenpress.com/> with offices in the United States and the United Kingdom was about to file a statement of claim against the McMaster librarian.
Every now and again I check out my Tumblr account and then: BAM! I get why people use Tumblr:
Why I believe Brian Topp should not be the leader of the NDP.
(Cross-posted to Google+ and to Facebook.)
1. I’m wary of anyone with no legislative experience running for the leadership of a political party. The House requires a very demanding, public lifestyle that isn’t suitable for everyone. I’m not saying that Topp doesn’t fit the type. I am saying that an Official Opposition, just like a Government, should not take on an untested legislator as their leader. It’s foolhardy to do so.
2. I’m a little offended by the way that Brian Topp talks about wanting to continue Jack Layton’s legacy. All the candidates will want to carry on Layton’s legacy. But what makes things so troublesome regarding Topp is the way that he makes it sound like he is Jack Layton Redux. If Brian wasn’t in the room when Jack Layton thought of any great idea being considered, then it seems like he’s trying to own a policy or platform as his very own when it was either Layton’s or the NDP’s as whole. Topp shouldn’t try to win the leadership by running on our collective memories of Jack Layton – he should try to win the leadership by presenting his own unique case for the leadership.
The first point is a political matter that shows why it makes sense for me, and other concerned NDPers, to vote for some one other than Topp. The second point is a matter of character that resonates with me negatively, which pretty much confirms that my vote will move in a different direction.
One more thing regarding Point no 2.: So long as Topp presents himself as Layton 2.0, there will be nothing unique or individual about his campaign, his motivations for the leadership, or his actual abilities to lead. It’s hard to differentiate his platform right now from the current NDP brand, i.e., I can’t look at Topp and figure out his vision for the future of the party since his vision for the future *is* the party line. You may think this is a good thing since it suggests that his principles are aligned with the party, but I see it as a weakness since it means that his principles are also all of his competitors’ principles. There is little there that actually sets him apart from the rest of the pack. I want love and hope and optimism, but I also want to see fresh ideas that will move forward our party and the values for which it stands.
When I’m not working in the library, I’m following local politics and cringing at bad copy. Here’s something that landed in my inbox late Friday night (click to enlarge):
Note the subject line for this e-mail:
Anti-idoling bill will ensure the province leads by example in reducing emissions
This is a complete and utter homonym-FAIL on the part of my current government (who I otherwise appreciate). It’s also a great example of why you shouldn’t send out PR at the end of a long week.
n.b. I’m not so much of a grammar nerd that I care to distinguish between homonyms and homophones. The gov’t still screwed up on this one.
Update: Out of fairness, I present to you the Official Opposition’s refusal to use apostrophes in their headlines:
Note the headline for this news release:
Three gold stars to the reader who can submit recent bad copy from the Nova Scotia Tories…
So here I am blogging from a hotel just across the road from Montreal’s Palais des Congres, where the 2009 CLA convention is being held. Go me. If I can find the time, i’ll post about all the sessions i’m attending, but for the most part, they’re focused on either information policy or information literacy. yeah, that’s me, a policy and civic rights wonk with a love for the tech..
If you’re not doing anything else on Friday, then head down to the Emerging Technologies Interest Group unConference at McGill, which is sure to be a hit. Movers and Shakers and Shovers and Movers will be there, so it will surely be a a treat. and say hello if we bump into one another – twitter.com/steeleworthy may be a halfway decent way to know what’s on the up-and-up in my interlife, but nothing beats a real conversation in person.